Should Szczesny be replaced?

It’s widely expected that Arsenal will sign a new goalkeeper during the summer transfer window. There is little doubt that we need a reliable, experienced and talented ‘keeper, something that has been sadly lacking since the departure of David Seaman in 2003. I mean no disrespect to Jens Lehman but his erratic behaviour and volatile temperament, which led to him being nicknamed Mad Jens, indicates to me his unreliability.

Of our present crop Szczesny is probably the best but Arsene Wenger seems to have spotted a flaw in his temperament hence his recent relegation to the bench. Fabianski is a reasonable ‘keeper but is not up to the standard required by a club playing near the top of the Premiership and in, hopefully again next season, the Champions League. Neither is Mannone.

We have been “linked” with several ‘keepers over the recent past, although it has to be said that the “linkage” has been mostly speculation on the part of tabloid sports writers desperate for some copy.

Two names have, however, appeared with some regularity, Stokes City’s Bosnian international Asmir Begovic and, rather surprisingly, Barcelona’s Spanish international Victor Valdes. One other high profile ‘keeper recently added to the list is Real Madrid’s Iker Cassillas.

Should any of the three be signed then I would expect at least one of our present ‘keepers to depart.

Without knowing how Wenger really sees his ‘keepers it is difficult to know just what he is looking for in terms of a replacement, if he feels that one of them will “make it” in the near future then a short term option may be considered. If, however, that is not the case then a younger player will be the requirement.

It would seem from newspaper gossip that Begovic is the favourite at the moment, at 25 years old he should be approaching his peak, at Stoke City since 2010, he has played 87 times, so has plenty of Premiership as well as international experience having played 20 times for Bosnia Herzegovina.

In the been there, done that, got the T-shirt category both Cassillas and Valdes would be terrific signings but as both are 31 years old they do not represent long term solutions and Wenger’s well known reluctance to give contracts of more than one year to players in that age group means that either could only be seen as stop gaps.

My personal preference would be for Wenger to take the long term view and sign Begovic, but either of the other two would more than adequately fill the gap up to the end of our manager’s present contract.

Begovic, Cassillas or Valdes? What do you think?

Written by Norfolk Gooner


202 Responses to Should Szczesny be replaced?

  1. Hi Norfolk – good question and I would say Begovic – PL experienced and always has a blinder against us.

    Valdes, no thanks, absolute shite – Almunia.v2.

    Casillas – bit of a drama queen and won’t be used to playing without all the protection refs give Franco’s team(and especially their goalie) in Spain.

    That being said I doubt whether another of Fergiescum’s lapdogs Puggillis will sell to us.

  2. Adrian says:

    If there was even the slightest possibility that we could sign Cassillas, i’d pick him hands down out of the 3

  3. Double98 says:

    There are three class keepers in the PL playiong for lesser sides – Vorm, Begovic or Mignolet.

    Chesney’s stats are not a top goal keepers stats – he has yet to produce a season comparable with Almunia let alone Lehmann, Seaman etc.

    he’s a model goalkeeper, all the attributes but he needs to knuckle down and get it out of his head that he has made it. The hard work for him should start now.

    Fabianski should move for his own sake. he’ll never win the fans over much the way Almunia never did despite being statistacally decent enough.
    I’d get one of the three above and show Ches what he needs to do – he has greater potential than any of them.
    Valdes or Casillas would not come unless they are guaranteed number 1 spot and we know how Wenger doesn’t like to kill his babies

  4. Norfolk Gooner says:

    Good morning to you all,

    Chary, just a bit harsh on Valdes? 🙂

    I’ve a very busy morning so I must run, I’ll be back later.

  5. Manthan says:

    Neither of 3 i would go for Julio cesar. Because we can get him in cheap as now qpr is certain to get relegated and he is very experienced keeper both at national and club level. HE can play for 2 season and later scez can replace him..

  6. atid says:

    There is no comparison. Casillas is the only world class keeper of all those mentioned above. There are one or two great keepers as well but valdes begovic fabianski and mannone are not amongst them. For me szczesny is as slightly better than all them and under the guidance of casillas he martinez iliev charles-cook vickers and huddart would flourish. Casillas could also get involved from a coaching capacity so for me we should release fabianski. Sell mannone release shea and also ditch gerry peyton. I believe that 7 keepers is enough however if the offer for mannone is not great then just keep him until the end of his contract.

  7. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Nice work Norfolk, thank you.

    I really don’t have a clue as I pay no attention to the opposition, and only glimpse players when we play against their teams.

    I like Julio Cesar’s name the most 🙂

    I guess these things come down to transfer budget, and I want it all thrown at a DM and Striker, both of the highest possible quality, which would leave just enough in the kitty to sign GiE as keeper.

    So, given that our defensive record is ok, and I believe Sz will improve, I’d give GiE a miss.

  8. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Saw your comment and link 🙂

  9. Anyanwu dominic says:

    Wenger is a fool,if there is anyone 2 leave dat person shud b wenger..av anybody thought of buyern present coach as wenger’s replacement?he shud be.

  10. evonne says:

    Anyanwu – nie mam pojecia o czym piszesz, ale przypuszczam ze to jakies bzdury. Jaki to jezyk?

  11. MickyDidIt89 says:

    That is very funny ROLF 🙂

  12. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Yipee, St George’s Day
    We’re allowed to slay Dragons
    Mount yer noble steeds, don the red cross, grab a lance and awaaay

  13. Manthan says:

    My vote too goes for Cesar 😉

  14. chas says:

    Nice one, NG.

    I think Szczesny’s over the hump now.
    Failing that, we should buy Wilfredo Caballero from Malaga. What a great name and he wears “Willy” on the back of his shirt.

    I don’t get the adoption of St George for our patron saint and flag.
    He was a bubble who was in the Roman army who slayed fictional creatures in the Middle East.

    Surely we should have someone like St Cuthbert, who was Anglo Saxon at least?

  15. Hi Chas ,I thought St George was a Turk ? Who knows….if we don’t have to answer the question re goalies and can chose anyone then yes, Boofon would be nice but Cesar doesn’t seem to have lit up the PL, or maybe I’ve not been paying attention ?


    Good stuff Norfolk. Chesney does not need replacing. He is an integral part of our young core that will eventully lead us to glory.

    Chas, are you having a dig at my Uncle George? In between running his Camden Town restaurant the geezer goes out of his way to save the world by killing a nasty Dragon and this is how you reward him? hahaha


    Watch it chary. hahaha

  18. Norfolk Gooner says:

    I am not calling for, or even suggesting that, Szczesny should be sold, the headline was an editorial addition, indeed I think that given a little more time he could well become a very good ‘keeper. The question is, do we have that time?

    Mickey, the name Julio Cesar has a certain ring to it, sadly we have had a poor experience with another slightly over-weight, nicely named Brazilian recently.

    Although he was a Turk and I’m not I feel close to St. George, the emblem on the badge of my old Grammar School was the man himself on horseback slaying a dragon.

  19. RockyLives says:

    Good stuff NG

    I’m not convinced that Szcz “has it” and therefore I would like us to get a senior ‘keeper. Then Szcz can stay as number two and hopefully develop by learning from a more experienced No 1.

    Incidentally, I doubt that Arsene’s “over 30s” policy applies to GKs. A good ‘keeper aged 31 probably has five more years at the top flight ahead of him.

  20. RockyLives says:

    We have had another player in our history named for a Roman Emperor and it should make us think twice before getting Julio Cesar…

    Augustus “Gus” Caesar anyone?

  21. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Anglo Saxons are bloody foreigners as well you know 🙂

  22. Mr Rock – how about Julio Baptista in that case ? Only beast for one game when he scored 4 against the dippers in a cup game, the rest of the time he was distinctly average, IIRC.

    My history is well dodgy Mr Syrup, St George probably was a bubble after all.

  23. MickyDidIt89 says:

    I’m with you as I thought he was a Turk who wangled his way into the Roman Legions.

  24. I reckon the true answer will be lost in the mists of time MDi89.

  25. Red Arse says:

    Well, the ‘official’ version, seems to disagree about any Turkish connection.

    It is likely that Saint George was born to a Greek Christian noble family in Lydda, Palestine, during the late third century between about 275 AD and 285 AD, and he died in the Greek city Nicomedia, Asia Minor.

    His father, Gerontios, was a Greek, from Cappadocia, Asia Minor, officer in the Roman army and his mother, Polychronia, was a Greek from the city Lydda, Palestine.

    They were both Christians and from noble families of Anici, so the child was raised with Christian beliefs.

    George decided to go to Nicomedia, the imperial city of that time, and present himself to Emperor Diocletian to apply for a career as a soldier. Diocletian welcomed him with open arms, as he had known his father, Gerontius — one of his finest soldiers. By his late 20s, George was promoted to the rank of Tribunus and stationed as an imperial guard of the Emperor at Nicomedia.

    In the year AD 302, Diocletian issued an edict that every Christian soldier in the army should be arrested and every other soldier should offer a sacrifice to the Roman gods of the time.

    However George objected and was eventually tortured and executed for his Christian beliefs.

  26. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Been busy googling to find a decent and honest Pagan of Ancient Briton stock. Here’s our man:

    Saint Alban was the first British Christian martyr. According to Bede’s Ecclesiastical History of the English People, I.vii and xviii, Alban was a pagan living at Verulamium (now St Albans), who converted to Christianity, and was beheaded on a hill above the Roman settlement of Verulamium.[1] St Albans Abbey was later founded near this site.

  27. MarbleHall says:

    szczesny is still young, in time he will become a great keeper under Wenger’s tuition.

  28. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Marble Hall,
    Great name 🙂
    I agree about Sz. He’s way too young to really judge. I would have gone for a Given type of mentor a few years ago, but right now, I’d forge ahead with what we’ve got.

  29. Red Arse says:

    Interesting question, NG.

    No, No, and No to Casillas, Valdes and Begovic.

    In any event, Casillas will be reinstated by Real once Maureen joins Chelsea in the summer.

    Valdes is really not that special in my opinion, and I think his threat to leave Barca is a contractual wrangle.

    Begovich has had a good season, but so what? All players have ups and downs, so things are always changing and Chezzer may be great next season, and Begovich a poor one. Who knows?

    The moral — stand by your man! 🙂

    Good Post tho’, thank you! 😀

  30. Red Arse says:


    How can a good old pagan, also be a Christian martyr? 🙂

  31. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Simple RA,
    “Was” a Pagan.
    Remember, Christianity had only just been invented.

  32. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Sounds to me like our man Alban was of Ancient Briton stock, not one of those tourists from Scandinavia or the Continent 🙂

  33. chas says:

    Does Ancient Briton mean Celtic?
    I think I’m from Anglo-Saxon origins so just as much a foreigner as Terry’s uncle in Camden Town. 🙂

  34. chas says:

    The reason I chose St Cuthbert was that he was a hermit i.e. fighting his own inner demons. Far more appropriate for us English.

    St Alban sounds like a decent enough dude also.

  35. uggunner says:

    If we can have a formidable 10 players up pitch, then I dont think we need another gk. Real madrid had the galaticos when casillas started at a young age and his lapses was covered by the great team, Valdes has messi and co to keep scoring and nobody cares if he concedes or not. Even in our invisbles days, after watching our highlights again and again i saw lenman’s mistakes and nobody cared just because we outscored the opponents. Ask Peter cech why he conceds stupid goals for his country. I believe with the level WS1 is now, coupled with a formidable squad, nobody would see his errors if we win well. I remember it was when our invisibles disintegrated we started seeing mad jens errors. And if am not mistaken (correct me if am wrong) imediately, we lost eduado to injury almunia started going gaga, well that was when we noticed it. And last season WS1 best form of his life was same as kocheny’s and we had one van judas scoring like hell.

  36. I think we should stick with Chezzer.

    Happy Saint George’s day everyone. I couldn’t give a toss where he came from.

    BTW St George is the patron Saint of England which has nothing to do with ancient Britain.

    All this wanking over rvp and the mancs is depressing even though it’s to be expected.

  37. evonne that was very funny 🙂

  38. RockyLives says:

    Well, if we want a symbol from antiquity, how about Calgacus.

    He fought the Roman Empire as it expanded through ancient Britain.

    In his speech before the battle of Mons Graupius he said of the Roman Empire “they create a desolation and they call it peace.” (At least, that’s what the historian Tacitus says he said).

    We could say the same of the oilygarch era ushered in by another Roman (Abramovich): “They create a desolation and they call it football.”

    The only problem with Calgacus was that he was probably Scottish 😦

  39. MickyDidIt89 says:

    England is named after the Land of The Angles, and they were foreigners!
    Ancient Britons were here first (along with some nasty Picts and Scots).

    Celts is a much misused term. Nowadays referring to the eight Celtic nations, but in them olden days it simply referred to all barbaric northerners in the eyes of those poncey Romans.

  40. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Just another normal days’ chat on AA 🙂

  41. MickyDidIt89 says:

    I have nasty feeling The American is busy leafing through his thick books looking to be awkward 🙂

  42. RockyLives says:


    So Micky, are you a Celt or one of those johnnie-come-lately Anglo-Saxons?

    And don’t get me started on the Normans!

  43. RockyLives says:

    Well if the American gets antsy, we’ll have to tell him that we’ll consider reclaiming our rights to his country…

  44. Red Arse says:

    The Celts were a warring bunch of tribes who over the 500 years leading up to the first Roman invasion established a Celtic culture throughout the British Isles.

    Northerners? Well, yes, but also Southerners, Easterners, and Westerners. Pushy crowd!! 🙂

  45. Red Arse says:

    I quite like Rockets idea about Caligula being the sainted big cheese — but he will probably be stuck in the Tower for being ………… provocative, or something! 🙂

  46. Norfolk Gooner says:

    If we are looking for a genuine leader from ancient times we need go no further than Boudicca or as some call her Boadicea. She became Queen of the Iceni tribe, based largely in present day Norfolk, after her husband died. However, the Romans annexed the tribe’s land, flogged Boudicca and raped her daughters.

    Boudicca then led an uprising that drove the Romans out of East Anglia, she destroyed Camoludunum (present day Colchester) and went on to totally destroy London as well as Verulamium. She was finally defeated by a much larger Roman force at the battle of Watling Street, under Seutonius and is believed to have committed suicide rather than be captured.

    The moral to this story, Don’t mess with the Iceni, we are still revolting here in Norfolk. :d

  47. Red Arse says:

    By the way, Micky, your 1:55 makes me think you should have taken up a career as a lawyer.

    No mention in your earlier piece that St Alban “Was pagan” ….. but you did mention he “Was Christian” — subtle bit of word shifting if ever I saw one! 🙂

    Yes, a career change beckons, sneaky, devious, snake oil salesman!! 😀

  48. Norfolk Gooner says:

    That should be 😀 at the end.

  49. Red Arse says:

    You think England should have a glorious loser as a patron, NG? 🙂

  50. Norfolk Gooner says:

    Yes Mickey, becoming a lawyer would be a great career move the fees you could charge would be less only than those charged by accountants. 😀

  51. Norfolk Gooner says:


    We have a long history of being led by losers, but we still manage to muddle through in the end. 😀

  52. Micky
    That is exactly what I was saying. The English are a Germanic people. The welsh are the ancient Britons

  53. RockyLives says:

    If we accept that to be Patron Saint the chap (or chapess) has to be Christian, then I reckon Chas has made the best suggestion, with St Cuthbert.

    I believe that after he popped off his body proved to be “incorruptible” (ie it didn’t rot) which is a bit like being “invincible”.

    You are muddling up your Romans and your Britons. Caligula was a Roman Emperor with, shall we say, “interesting” proclivities. Calgacus was the chap who tried to duff up the Romans somewhere oop north…

  54. RockyLives says:

    The Welsh – and the Scots, Irish, Cornish and Bretons. Basically we got pushed to the Western fringes of Europe 😦

  55. RockyLives says:

    I love a good footy discussion, don’t you? 😀

  56. Rocky
    A Welsh chap I know alaways says the Irish are Welsh people who could swim


    GM, when i went to North Wales i was realy surprised how different to the English looks wise they were. Loads of them had dark hair and eyes, very Mediteranian looking. At one stage i thought i was back in Crete and started doing a Greek folk dance , but no one joined in. hahaha

    So if the Welsh are the original English, do they decend more from the southern part of Europe than the Angles and Celts?

  58. MickyDidIt89 says:


    You lying toad.
    You should be the Lawyer not me.

    “She was finally defeated by a much larger Roman force at the battle of Watling Street”

    Pants on Fire or what. It was the other way round. She had about a million filthy locals, while there were about 12 poncey Romans 🙂

  59. Red Arse says:


    Having read up on it, now, the Celts were the first culture to populate Western Europe, until they were pushed further Westward by other tribes, and then the all conquering Romans.

    So technically, the ‘extremities’ of the British Isles and Europe, Scotland, Wales, Cornwall and more particularly Ireland, as well as Brittany in France and the Southern areas of Portugal and Spain are still heavily populated by the descendants of the ‘original’ inhabitants, if such a term can be used.

    So if a Celtic forebear was picked to represent England, he might also represent all these others, who are all distantly related.

    The fact they all seem to have originated in Northern India as evidenced by the Celtic language….. is another discussion!! 😀

  60. Norfolk Gooner says:

    We are all forgetting our very own….Saint Dennis de Bergkamp, as his middle name is Nicolaas, he will do for Christmas as well. Two for the price of one! Bargain!!

  61. Redders – your 3.55pm – so I knew I’d get a mention in the end!

  62. Norfolk Gooner says:

    Mickey, Who are you calling a “filthy local” I’ll have you know that we in Iceniland take a bath at least once a year…whether we need it or not! So there!!

  63. MickyDidIt89 says:

    There are two Celtic Lots in Northern Spain, which added to The Isle of Man, make up the eight nations.

  64. Red Arse says:

    Oh, stop trying to wriggle out of it Rock Hard!

    I know you wrote Calgacus, or Galapogos Travel as some knew him, but I also know you meant Caligula, it is obvious you simply chickened out because you could not spell Gaius Julius Caesar Augustus Germanicus!! 😀

    Have you ever thought of becoming a sneaky Journalist? 😀

  65. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Gaius Julius
    You’re kidding 🙂

  66. Red Arse says:

    I am sure it is just the Six Nations, Micky. Didn’t Wales beat England, in March, to stop them winning the grand slam or something?

    I know a strange ovoid ball came into it somewhere! 🙂

  67. RockyLives says:

    Ah, I get it! It’s that American habit of re-writing history.

    In fact I have just remembered who REALLY won the Battle of Mons Graupius – it was General Patton 🙂

  68. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Norfolk is probably going to get record comment numbers, and barely a sniff of football talk ROLF
    Blimey, what ’till ‘Err on High gets in 😦

  69. Red Arse says:

    They were all a bit Gaius, Micky.

    You remember, Gaius Julius Caesar fell out with that poor old broad, Boudica, after she told him she had a headache! 🙂

  70. RockyLives says:

    I like it! We could have a Celtic Commonwealth. The nations could share a common debt and get drunk together while singing maudlin tunes about long lost times… 🙂

  71. Red Arse says:

    That sounds a bit like Sour Mons Grapius, Rock a Billy!! 🙂

  72. To bring discussion back to football matters before Peachy finds out about the off topic comments, just heard Olly’s red card appeal has been rejected – so no Olly till the Toon game. 😦

  73. RockyLives says:

    I heard that all your victories were at Mons Venus, Redders. Is this true? 🙂

  74. MickyDidIt89 says:

    ROLFING at RA and RL

  75. RockyLives says:

    That’s a shame Chary. Did they give him an extra game because we had the temerity to appeal?

  76. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Wrong blog methinks Chary 🙂

  77. Red Arse says:


    Your reference to Knickerless Betty @ 3:55 was a bit tasteless — as was Betty!! 😀

  78. Red Arse says:

    It seems, CharyB, that you are a Celt, after all.

    And you do love being a bearer of sad tidings, such as, “Giro’s appeal has failed”, and “there is only 50 gallons of beer left — between the two of us — until tomorrow!”

    Yep, you are an honorary leprechaun !! 😀

  79. RockyLives says:

    Schoolboy error Norfolk.
    Dennis is not a saint.
    Saints sit at the right hand of the Dennis.

  80. Norfolk Gooner says:

    Old ‘Arry Redknap has been done for speeding, he denies it of course, claiming it was his dog driving, apparently the mutt was rushing to the Laiiki Bank to clear out his account before the Cypriot government got it’s paws on his dosh. He wanted to transfer it all to a safer bank in the K Nine Islands. 😀

  81. Red Arse says:

    Well, it is true that I have had a few sterling victories at Mons Venus, Rocket Man, @ 4:12 (and let me tell you, if you have not been to THAT club in Tampa, Fl, you have not lived), but without shooting the wind, I have not done too badly in Bracknell, Herts, either!

    Good of you to say so, partner!! 😀

  82. Ha ha Redders, yes the doomer strikes ! (Bracknell is Berks, shurely?)

    Mr Rock, it was always a 3 match ban for serious foul play, so no extension of the ban for frivolous appealling in this case as you hinted at.

    He misses the Manure/Van Judas match, QPR away and Wigan at home, back for Toon away.

  83. Red Arse says:

    Dog-gone it, NG, that durned hound has more tales than you can shake a stick at!! 🙂

  84. Norfolk Gooner says:

    Mea culpa, Rocky, Mea maxima culpa.

  85. evonne says:

    Norfolk – good post and excellent question. Unfortunately it’s one of the questions that is almost impossible to answer. Do we really need another goalie? Szczesny’s return was very promising and hopefully long term. Fabianski, like you said, should go for him own good; a nice guy, but probably not good enough for the top club.

    What worries me is Da Gea and Hugo Lloris. They started as very average and error prone keepers, but quickly became a force to be reckoned with. So why our goalies don’t develop as quickly and efficiently as others do?

    Also, I am convinced that we need another top class defender, which would make any goalie look good. So if there is any money in the kitty left after buying top striker, let’s spend it on a defender rather than a goalie.

  86. evonne says:

    “Dennis is not a saint.
    Saints sit at the right hand of the Dennis” 🙂 🙂 🙂 Amen.

  87. Norfolk Gooner says:


    Thanks for the kind words,

    There’s no doubt that Szczesny and all our ‘keepers suffered from the turmoil in front of them, constant chopping and changing due to injury, suspension and, to an extent, incompetence, must have damaged their confidence.

    It’s worth noting that things have improved of late with a more settled back four. Merts and Kos have developed an understanding, while Sagna is returning to his best and Monreal is providing a steadying influence on the left.

  88. Red Arse says:


    As Rocky’s latin right hand man, he has authorised me to say to you, in response to your 4:29, tibi ignosco filius meus – in nomine patris. 🙂

    I am off to sunbathe for a while, because I cannot keep up with you guys and your intellectual discourse. It is too much for a mere pleb, such as I. 🙂

  89. evonne says:

    Yes Norfolk, they have improved of late. Geled at long last. But that’s still only 4-5 defenders, any injury and we are very vulnerable again.

    I mentioned after the Fulham game that the polish commentators said that Szczesny and his Twitter activities became a liability. That and his dad’s attack on Wenger gave a nasty impression of a arrogant, self conceited twat that Szczesny was quickly becoming. A time off, Fabianski taking his place did a wonder to WS’s morale, and a new, more serious and responsible Wojtek emerged last week. Maybe, hopefully, yes please

  90. RockyLives says:

    Vale, Culus Roseus 🙂

  91. RockyLives says:

    Good point about De Gea. He was utter pants last year but has really settled into the role now.

    Let’s hope Szcz can do the same.

  92. saarkii says:

    It’s no wonder we don’t win trophies when Le Dross sells our best player and i reiterate BEST player to Man Utd, he’s just not fit for purpose.

  93. RockyLives says:

    Don’t be silly Sarky – we didn’t sell him to ManUre – we sold him to Galatasaray.

    Oh… I do miss Eboue… “swoon…”

  94. RockyLives says:

    And anyway, what has Luther van Dross got to do with our transfer policy?

  95. chas says:

    Great fun reading through this afternoon’s comments, cheers.

    So Calgacus in goal for us next season and we’re ready to go. 🙂

  96. chas says:


    You’re on the wrong blog.
    You didn’t thank the Icenic tribe descendant for the post and then put a completely unrelated comment to today’s topic of discussion.

    Does anyone think we’d have won a trophy this year if we’d have kept van Judas?
    No way of knowing one way or the other, of course, but I don’t.

  97. Anyone suprised at what a bunch of twats the fa are?

  98. saarkii says:

    That Cyborg’s hackneyed views and no game stategy needs a Software Update.

  99. chas says:

    No, GM.

  100. Chas
    I think the mancs would have won the league even if we’d have kept him. They would have bought Lewandowski or someone else.

  101. RockyLives says:

    Do you think it’s because he owes his origins to those Teutonic tribes who caused much trouble for the Romans until – and you’ll like this – they were well and truly sorted out by the dad of none other than the aforementioned Caligula!

    Caligula’s dad, you see, was Germanicus – a Roman general who earned the nickname “Germanicus” because he was good at beating up Germans.

    He had his toddler son Gaius with him on campaign and got the army quartermasters to make him a special pair of Roman army boots, scaled down to fit his little feet.

    The Roman word for “little boots” – as I’m sure you know – is “caligula”. The name stuck, even when he later became Emperor (and a particularly nutty one at that).

  102. Red Arse says:

    I get it Sarky!

    You are making uncorroborated, unrelated statements which have no correlation to the conclusion, and challenging us to be equally idiotic. Right?

    Well, let’s get this straight — no one can beat you there, but how about this one;

    Top end computers are capable of solving complex problems very quickly, therefore Wenger is a computer. OK? 🙂

    Asinine bloggers make asinine comments, so obviously Sarky is asinine. hey I’m getting into this!! 🙂

  103. Red Arse says:

    No, wait – ‘Asinine bloggers make asinine comments, so obviously Sarky is asinine’ is not a non sequitur — it’s true! Damn – I guess I lost, so you win the idiot stakes, Sarky.

  104. saarkii says:

    Knowledge puffs up love builds up

  105. chas says:

    GM, that wasn’t an answer to the question I asked, but I think you’re right in what you say.

  106. Red Arse says:

    Rocky, 😀 😀

    Caligula eh? Not a patch on Calgacus tho’! 🙂

  107. Red Arse says:

    I like that quote, Sarky. 🙂

    You are nowhere near as bad as people say you are — you are much, much worse!! 🙂

  108. RockyLives says:

    We love you Sarky, although you seem a little un-puffed up.

  109. chas says:

    Love builds up.
    How romantic, Sarky.
    Do you think we’ll finish above the spuds and/or the chavs?

  110. RockyLives says:

    I suspect you’re right. Even if BSR had stayed we would probably not have won a trophy – although I suspect we would have top four wrapped up by now.

  111. Red Arse says:

    And Man Citeh might be a lot closer to Manc Utd, if Red Scnozz had not bought RvP.

  112. chas says:

    Really Rocky?
    I’m not so sure. Hasn’t he scored less league goals this season than last?
    Besides once he decided he was bigger than the club he would have disrupted the whole season if he’d been forced to stay, surely?

  113. saarkii says:

    You’re not ready, would be like throwing pearls to swine.

  114. evonne says:

    someone has been listening to the talkshite radio today!
    No, we would not win the league had we kept the Judas, because without his sale we would not buy Podolski, Giroud or maybe even Cazorla

  115. RockyLives says:

    Ah touche my friend Sarky!

    Well played.

    You will have no truck with our Latin history chitchat and have, instead, moved the ground deftly onto matters Biblical. A move I would have been proud of myself!

    “Casting pearls before swine,” from the Sermon on the Mount I believe (but I could just be puffing myself up).

    Indeed, in that same sermon, does not Jesus say: “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

    I feel that a place alongside the Dennis awaits for a certain Monsieur Wenger, persecuted as he is at every turn.

  116. evonne says:

    you are in great form Rocky 🙂
    reading today’s comments I had to go back and read the title of the post to understand what attracted the wider audience today….it was probably the question mark – they like being empowered to make decisions

  117. saarkii says:

    For righteousness sake not for wrongdoing.

  118. RockyLives says:

    Stop worrying Sarky.

    As the Sermon goes on to say: “Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?”

  119. Shard says:

    I have to say, Rocky’s comments are reminding me very much of how one of my favourite literary characters would deal with disagreement. The character in question is Psmith from Psmith Journalist by P.G. Wodehouse 🙂

    (I probably shouldn’t reveal my lack of literary knowledge in this manner, but there it is)

  120. RockyLives says:

    You have no idea how big a compliment that is 🙂
    Psmith is one of my heroes 🙂

  121. saarkii says:

    Take heed beware of wolves in sheeps clothing

  122. RockyLives says:

    “Will you inform her that I called? The name is Psmith. P-smith.”
    “Peasmith, sir?”
    “No, no. P-s-m-i-t-h. I should explain to you that I started life without the initial letter, and my father always clung ruggedly to the plain Smith. But it seemed that there were so many Smiths in the world that a little variety might be introduced. Smythe I look on as a cowardly evasion, nor do I approve of the too prevalent custom of tackling another name on in front by means of a hyphen. So I decided to adopt the Psmith. The p, I should add for your guidance, is silent, as in pthisis, psychic, and ptarmigan.”

  123. RockyLives says:

    I’m starting to like you 🙂

  124. saarkii says:

    You’ve got to love your enemies

  125. goonerjake says:

    For the first time in a long time I tuned into talksport on the drive home from work. What did I expect to hear?….. well I confidently assumed they would be discussing Man Utd title win and not even mention arsenal. But no…..

    They were having a go at the Arsenal for letting van persie go, how can talksport possibly get everything back to criticising arsenal.

    I suppose if hostilities do break out in korea that will be blamed on arsenal.

  126. Red Arse says:

    Psarky, I like you too! Obdurate, obstinate, but not obsequious! 🙂

  127. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Damn this a fine place to be 🙂
    Making work near impossible!

  128. Red Arse says:


    It was very clever of Psarky to re-direct the conversation to matters religious, he may be a coxcomb, but any man able to admit his faults, namely one line trite nonsense (albeit in code) by inferring that wonderful adage, who among you will cast the first stone, or better yet, who among you is without fault?

    These sentiments brings a tear to the eye, altho’ that might the onion I am peeling — but press on dear Psarky!

  129. saarkii says:

    What’s stopping you repenting, your pride. Remember unbelief is a sin.

  130. Shard says:

    Haha.. I see you remember your Wodehouse as well as you seem to recall your scripture Rocky 🙂

    I’m also glad (and perhaps relieved) to see that you took the Psmith reference as a compliment since that is exactly how it was meant.

  131. Shard says:

    Is saarki Joey Barton in disguise?

  132. Shard says:

    That’s not meant as a compliment by the way 🙂

  133. Red Arse says:

    How did the exams go, Shardy person? 🙂

  134. RockyLives says:

    Good point Sarky (“unbelief is a sin”) – but surely only if the unbeliever is wrong?

    If the unbeliever is right to not believe (because there is nothing there to believe in) then it cannot be a sin for surely there is no divine authority to render it such?

    Hmmm… I rather fear I might have fallen into your trap Sarky…

  135. Shard says:

    You forget Crimson Butt.. They are still a month away.. On 26th of May,1989 our boys passed the test of the ages. 24 years on, and I hope to do the same 🙂

  136. RockyLives says:

    I bet you Post comments on other Arsenal blogs, but I also bet you never get this much love, eh?

  137. RockyLives says:

    “…and it’s Shard bursting through the middle of the exam… a First is up for grabs now…”

  138. saarkii says:

    Repentance is a gift from god

  139. Red Arse says:

    Psarky, a strong friendship, such as you have with Rock and me, does not need daily conversation and does not need bloggy togetherness, so don’t feel the need to hurry back, we will always remember you fondly!! 😀

  140. Shard says:

    So is silence..To not use it is to gift a horse a kiss on the mouth..

  141. saarkii says:

    The wiles of satan sends shard to distract from the truth.

  142. Shard says:

    Wile E Coyote craves roadrunner. Truth is stranger than fiction..but life imitates art..

  143. Shard says:

    I know how to talk crazy person!!

    Pity it’s not one of the requirements of the exam..

  144. saarkii says:

    Another atheist quote

  145. Red Arse says:


    I hope you will see this visit as a way to develop your very promising one line approach to blogging, and don’t worry about your comments being excruciating folderol, think of it instead as being like casting your wit, or even half-wit into mushroom spawn, and hey presto your one liners will soon become, well, hopefully within 3 years at most, the epitome of two liners, with patience and practise, of course. 🙂

  146. Shard says:


    Mushroom spawn.. Is that your way of calling him a fungi?

  147. saarkii says:

    You don’t even know yourself, how can you comment.

  148. saarkii says:

    When words are many transgressions are not lacking

  149. Shard says:

    so stop kissing the horse and use the gift God (not god) gave you.

  150. RockyLives says:

    Redders – you have hit on it!
    If you put Sarky’s one liners together you get a strangely affecting wild juju poetry:

    That Cyborg’s hackneyed views
    And no game stategy
    Needs a Software Update.
    Knowledge puffs up love builds up.
    You’re not ready.
    Would be like throwing pearls to swine,
    For righteousness sake not for wrongdoing.
    Take heed – beware
    Of wolves in sheeps’ clothing
    You’ve got to love your enemies – what’s stopping you?
    Repenting: your pride? Remember
    Unbelief is a sin.
    Repentance is a gift from god, the wiles of satan
    Sends shard to distract from the truth.
    Another atheist.

  151. saarkii says:

    You’ve got potential

  152. RockyLives says:

    Was that a statement? Or the final line of the verse?

    I must say I am very impressed. Some blog sites would have you barred, but here you have become The Bard 🙂

  153. RockyLives says:

    Alas, my comrade-in-arms, I fear we both are drifting into the tepid waters of indulgence and, quite possibly, have frightened off the regular, right-thinking members of this fine forum.

    So I bid you “Adieu” mon ami!

    Here’s to another day, another duel, another dream…

  154. evonne says:

    Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to start blogging and remove all doubt.

  155. Red Arse says:


    That’s like a giant Haiku. All he needs to do now is to borrow a brain and he could have a career. 😉

    Sadly, we have to face up to our failure with Sarky.
    My dog is tutting and shaking his head at the lack of comprehension poor old Sarky is demonstrating. We are banging on an empty vessel.

    I don’t know about you, but I feel that I am trying to communicate
    with someone who writes mottoes for Chinese fortune cookies.

    Have to go, I know I am becoming seriously bored when I start to nod off half way through reading his name!!

  156. evonne says:

    I want Barca dominance to end, but feel dirty supporting the Germans….No, Barca for me, come on you cheating Catalans, get a grip!!

  157. saarkii says:

    Comrade in arms- Laural and Hardy

  158. I’m easy I don’t mind who wins tonight

  159. Big Raddy says:

    Hi Sheep. I would like BM to win the CL because then we can say we hammered them at their place

  160. saarkii says:

    I want barca crushed

  161. RockyLives says:

    I want BM to win because the German league is a much better league than that bent two-horse-race they have in Espana…

  162. Big Raddy says:

    Norfolk. Thanks for the post.

    I am surprised that Chesney has had such an average season; he is quality but something is wrong. Could it be that he has been overplayed? After all he is still very young.

    Perhaps a summers rest will help him focus.

  163. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Hard not to think Messi could do with a fresh challenge.
    Just saying 🙂

  164. Shard says:

    OK..No Valdes please.

  165. Just took Limpar for a walk checked the score 3-0 shocked.
    We beat them Germans we are champs ,
    Ps good second goal by rip last night for man poo

  166. Big Raddy says:

    What is the point of 4 linesmen if one cannot see a blatant block 3 yards away?

    4-0 Goodbye Barca

  167. evonne says:

    goes to show what a great team we have. We beat Bayern 2:0 at their own pitch, there!

  168. RockyLives says:

    A blatant block.
    The second goal was offside.

    I think Barca started getting a lot of attention on them because of all the bent refereeing decisions they were getting (not least the van Judas red card a few years ago). So they have probably stopped the fix for the time being and now they’re struggling.

    Fair play to BM though.

    And fair play to us for thrashing them in Munich.

  169. Bye bye OLA come on real tomorrow

  170. Big Raddy says:

    Poor from Barca manager. Subs much too late when their midfield was being totally dominated.

    With Villa and Cesc on the bench?

    And playing a clearly unfit Messi was stupid

  171. Big Raddy says:

    I want Real to get a hammering but they will win tomorrow.

  172. LB says:

    Even allowing for the two dodgy goals, Barça were made to look average and that is something you don’t get to write often.

  173. RockyLives says:

    I would say BM made Barca look average – and you don’t get to say that very often, do you?

  174. saarkii says:

    Dortmund will crush madrid

  175. Big Raddy says:

    & just over a month ago we made BM look ordinary in the same stadium.

    Funny old game ….

  176. Rasp says:

    Many apologies for my extremely late arrival. congrats to Norfolk Gooner on a very well received first post … your name now appears in our list of authors.

    I think any of the 3 keepers you list would be a better option for Arsenal’s number 1 at this stage Sz’s development. Of the 3, I’d favour Begovic for the reasons already given by others.

  177. Gooner In Exile says:

    Evening all…….just read post and all comments…..have no idea how we got to them but it was good fun reading.

    Sell Szczesny…..No
    Replace Szczesny…..who with?

    Begovic, Mignolet and was it Vorm mentioned earlier? The one difference between them and an Arsenal keeper is practice, I would guess they have twice as many shots to deal with as an Arsenal keeper so have more opportunity to make lots of saves in a game and appear better than they really are.

    None of them control their area and they have all been capable of errors (even this season) but they are not focussed on half as much as an error by a keeper in the top 4 or 5 clubs.

  178. LB says:



  179. RockyLives says:

    LB 🙂
    I’m in a playful mood today…

  180. RockyLives says:

    Evonne’s point about De Gea has convinced me that we should stick with Chezzer.

  181. Shard says:

    I realised I never really answered the question in the post..

    Ideally I’d like an experienced, senior keeper who’d be ok with letting Szczesny play ahead of him, but will always be pushing him for a starting spot. And the only way Szcz can keep the starting spot will be by playing well. I realise such keepers are hard to find (at least those that are any good)

    However, I think a keeper isn’t the first priority, if we can keep Fabianski. There’s a good goalkeeper in there somewhere. I’d be ok with Szczesny and Fabianski as long as we get in the players we need in other positions.

  182. saarkii says:

    Anyone who can break both his arms in the gym is not to be trusted between the sticks, he should stick to playing snooker.

  183. Gooner In Exile says:

    I remain unconvinced by De Gea.

    Bit of speculation on my part but Szczesny’s contract expires in June 2014……any chance there are contract negotiations currently ongoing that may have affected his performances? Wouldn’t be the first…..

  184. saarkii says:

    He’s always been rubbish, just like Ramsey and Walcott.

  185. weedonald says:

    We all seem to have a convenient but understandable loss of memory when it comes to keepers after Seaman. Lehmann was one of the Invincibles and he was a great keeper for us during his years at AFC. Fabianski, before his rib injury was playing very well and showing what he is capable of. Szcesny is a real talented but immature keeper, but will mature with time. The entire point of keeping these people is that AFC have spent enormous time and energy,resources on developing them, including Mannone. Maybe we could do without Mannone and even Fabianski, if we got a world class keeper like Casillas BUT Wenger is very hesitant to destroy a budding star’s confidence and hope by bringing in an existing transfer. Cesar has had a less than stellar season with QPR under ‘Arry’s feeble guidance:

    Pld 34
    W 4
    D 12……these are a lot of tied games
    L 18
    GF 29
    GA 56
    GD −27
    Pts 19

    all in all, QPR seem destined for the drop BUT the above numbers tell me that their keeper probably helped earn them 12 ties, with a very shite defense that allowed 56 goals. over 34 games. I saw Cesar at Inter and he really impressed me but he is now 33 and a bit heavy in the girth….would he be a good buy….probably and a lot cheaper than Casillas or Valdes. I would prefer a younger keeper reaching his prime like Begovic or Mignolet…..but Wenger has an eye for recuperating older players’ careers and 33 is not very old for a keeper. Knowing Wenger , he’ll either surprise us with an unexpected purchase or stick with his current keepers.

  186. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Didit making moonshine. Hick.

  187. Manthan says:

    I agree we need a DM and a good CB as well as a striker next season because as you see this season all teams were strong and same will happen next season. PL is becoming more and more competitive season after season. If we want to win we need atleast 2 or 3 world class player.. I am fine with Scez he will improve.

  188. chas says:

    More terrifying than your imagination can conceive…… 😆

  189. evonne says:

    what was the name of the Barca troll visiting this site and annoying the pants of us?

  190. MickyDidIt89 says:

    My favourite is that he didn’t feel that a first distillation (90 proof) was quite enough, and that it required a second to achieve 180!

  191. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Must away now. Tootle pip.

  192. chas says:

    Wasn’t it
    Més que un twat ?

  193. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    BM have won 19 of their last 20 games and we know what happened in the 20th.

    I didn’t realise at the time how fantastic a result that was, all I could think about was that it was a meaningless win.

  194. chas says:

    So in effect we are now the best team in Europe. 🙂

  195. chas says:

    Off to gym

  196. evonne says:

    not NOW, we have always been the best team in the world 🙂

    …by far the greatest team, the world has ever seen!!!

  197. Gooner In Exile says:

    Coming home last night I heard that Aneke had scored a screamer for Crewe, can’t find a video of the game but reading a few reports his name is constantly mentioned throughout the game as the man that everything went through. Seems he is being utilised in a deep lying midfield role, he is built like PV4, and judging by some of the reports he has the qualities too.

    “The Alex could never be accused of that as long as Aneke was on the pitch and it was a fine goal from the 19-year-old which settled the affair in their favour.

    He picked the ball up on the edge of the box dummied left, pulled right and fired home a shot into the top left corner to give Crewe a well-deserved first win since winning the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy at Wembley.”

    “Aneke, borrowed from Arsenal this term, has a variety of killer passes in his locker rarely spotted in the third tier and he showed that quality in the first minute when he dug the ball out of the sand and threaded a chipped ball to set Leitch-Smith in behind, only for the striker to lose out in the chase.

    Aneke was to produce a back-heel flick over his own head to his forward partner a few minutes later which was one way of winning a half-way line aerial battle that United’s England under-21 defender Harry Maguire has probably not seen before this campaign.”

  198. Big Raddy says:

    GIE. Wouldn’t it be great if our DM solution lies within the club?

  199. Rasp says:

    Morning all, today’s offering is from Gus (his second post for AA I believe)

    …. New post …..

  200. Shard says:

    Morning everyone,

    I think Aneke is more in the Diaby mould than Vieira. There are quite a few midfielders in your youth and reserves who might have a chance. But I think we should wait a couple of years more before seeing them in the first team. Let them go out on loan and gain experience. By then, the likes of Arteta and Rosicky will be fading, who knows what’ll happen with Diaby, and Yennaris, Eisfeld, Aneke (and Olsson and Toral too) might sense a regular spot open for them.

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